September 26, 2018
The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has expressed concern over the arrest warrants issued for Dawn journalist Cyril Almeida by the Lahore High Court.
The federation said in a release: “The IFJ is concerned by the arrest warrant against prominent journalist Cyril Almeida for an interview he conducted and published in the newspaper.
“It’s journalists’ rights and responsibilities to report fact and present opinions of the prominent people of the society, and the interview with a former prime minister in no way is an act of treason. The IFJ considers an arrest warrant to present journalist in a court is an excessive and unnecessary measure, therefore, urges the court to withdraw it.”
The Lahore High Court issued a non-bailable arrest warrant for journalist Almeida over an interview with former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. He is required to appear at the next hearing of a case seeking action against the former PM on charges of treason.
On September 24 the court summoned Almeida, the assistant editor of Dawn newspaper, to appear for the next hearing on October 8, in a case relating to an interview, published in May 2018.
In the interview, Sharif had said the “attacks in Mumbai (in 2008) were carried out by people from Pakistan,” according to reports. The court also ordered Almeida to be placed on the Exit Control List (ECL), barring him from international travel.
Almeida was banned temporarily from leaving Pakistan in October 2016 shortly after he wrote an article about a rift between the government and the military.
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